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Andy B.'s Profile > 
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COUGAR Spike Black Steel / Plastic MicroATX Mini Tower Gaming Case with USB 3.0 and 12CM Cougar Fan
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 day to 1 week

Pros: Pretty solid- price was the clincher for me.
Has 2 spots for fans on the side, i always build XF/SLI units so that is a must have.
Tool less drive carousels, that dont work for me but its a plus for most people

Cons: For the price i really shouldn't whine, so I'll just nit pick a little.
Could of been 15mm taller, i needed 5 X slots, only has 4
Zero wire management- but NO window is a plus on that note.
The only 2 -1/2" spot i see (so far) is on the floor, its unusable for me as i use MOD/PS and its not practical to run a wire for 1 drive
A platter type drive may interfere with your memory if you have tall H/S on it, so the quick release drive sled thingy's might not be
an option if you have to push the drive further into the hole.

You guys really could of beveled the side behind the M/B outward for some wire room

Other Thoughts: EHE- Front pops off like all case's with a 1/4"-8mm nut driver or socket whatever you got handy.
Wires are long enough on I/O panel, will hold 12" video cards.
I am expecting to have to use 12/15mm fans for my liquid cooler. The stock 25mm fans always hit
the H/S on the board in Matx cases. Not specific to this unit.

I have to shelf these for now, i needed 5-X slot case's for XF/SLI setups-- yea that's my fault

Thermaltake Core V21 Black Extreme Micro ATX Cube Chassis CA-1D5-00S1WN-00
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 month to 1 year

4 out of 5 eggs Nice case for the price- lots of air and room 08/05/2016

This review is from: Thermaltake Core V21 Black Extreme Micro ATX Cube Chassis CA-1D5-00S1WN-00

Pros: Its a better case than the RaidMax Hyperion cube i bought..
Was awesome airflow
I didnt need to cut or drill anything and put a monster Matx CF build in it.

Cons: Could of used 1 more 2 1/2" sled, i used 4 SSD drive's most people wont.

Out of stock right now, i need another one.

Other Thoughts: I needed a mesh case for Matx- CF setup that held 12" video cards- fit the bill perfect.
Its not quiet by any stretch of the imagination but i'm fine with that. You want a quiet case
dont buy one made of mesh- Daaa

This case has so many different ways to set up it might give you a headache deciding what you want.

Matx board
850W P/S
4 x 2 1/2" SSD
120 Liq CPU Cooler
2 x R9 video

I don't generally like or buy windowed cases but this on turned out saweeeet.
A lot of extra fans

ASRock 970M Pro3 AM3+/AM3 AMD 970 + AMD SB950 6 x SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
  • Verified Owner
  • neweggOwned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: It's Matx, AM3+ and rated at 125-140 watts. Supports RAID.
Has 4 memory slots and 3 PCIE 16 slots for a CF if you want.
Will run whatever memory your CPU can support
Its a good basic board for a low budget PC.
Has a pretty and fuctional GUI bios.
The price is right.

Its not an MSI board wich means you will actually have a chance of tech support if needed, so i tested the waters. Tech support replied to me in a few hours when i contacted them with a compatibility question that i couldn't find posted anywhere on their initial HCL list.

They didn't tell me what i wanted to hear they just re-assured me that this is still an actual issue with this board\chipset and not just my isolated issue. He wasn't right or wrong, they kind of gave me a textbook reply which is just fine with me. In that position i would of done the same thing.

Cons: I had issues at first configuring an SSD RAID, or ya know even getting an SSD drive to show up in RAID mode. It has been a few years since i have done
an AMD build from the ground up and that reminded me why. This little issue is an AMD issue and it's whats going to seperate the people with google degrees
who read a few google pages from the people that are actually smart and experienced.

(BOARD SPECIFIC) Not enough PCIE lanes on the second slot, should be x16, x8 at least. Thats why it cant run SLI only CF, AMD cards can use less lanes. Where are all the lanes on this board anyway? In reality thats not a huge issue for an AMD card. You loose less than 5% of the BW and performance in CF mode on that lower slot only.

Its a fairly thin board, if its not kept very cool its not going to last very long. I have 3 GOOD fans and liquid- so far.

Should of been out 5-6 years ago.

Other Thoughts: Remember the basic AMD memory rule. Dont expect to run PC 1866/2133 on some tired old out dated Athlon or phenom 4/6 core without issues. Win-7 is also going to cause you memory problems, either stop using an outdated OS or learn to use it. Turn the speed down or use 1 small(4GB or smaller) stick of slow 1600 or slower for your install if your getting errors/BSOD's.

While i do appreciate the honesty of the tech support department, this is not a new issue with the SSD drives. It should clearly be listed in the form of an HCL on the website and/or in the product description- at least make it a footnote. Then people will look it up. Your engineering and tech support department have known about this problem since before this board came out. It would be cheaper to change the description than loose customers out of anger over a compatibility issue they had no idea about before they bought it.

I never owned a piece of ASRock equipment before 6 weeks ago, i now own 7. Almost all my MSI compters have now been replaced, boy that company sure went down the tubes quick. The fact that your TS guy did get back to me with an honest answer goes a long way in my opinion and is the reason i will continue buy your prducts. I sometime forget he only has a keyboard in front of him, in most cases i have more experience than them and i have a room full of parts to test and find my way to a solution. I was just hoping for a quicker easier documented solution than my approach.

It is a 6-7 year old chipset, has the exact same problems as when it came out. If you cant work with those problems don't buy it. If this board lives past the 3 month curse it apparently has i'll buy 2 more-maybe. I wont abuse this board, i have no idea of other user circumstances or why it only has a short LE.
Under normal circumstance's i think-i hope this board lasts a long time

I haven't had a whole lot of time to dig into this but here's what i have so far. These parts may or may not end up in a better board eventually i was just a tad infatuated when i seen good looking AM3+ Matx board so it was an impulse buy. I waited a long time for CF capable AM3+ Matx board thats the only reason i bought it. We'll see how it goes/runs but as for right now i think i might be a tiny bit in the overkill zone as far this build is concerned.

FX 8320 (liquid cooled)
4 x SSD RAID0 at 1400/1000 R/W. Just a guess i havent benched it yet but i am quite familliar with that brand of SSD drives.
4 x 4GB SKHynix (G-Skill) 2133, its the "V", its BLUE- i dont remeber its name
1 x GXT970, only temorary. I will go with faster more solid & dependable AMD setup, CF of probably R9-380's or better
Its a TT V21 case with ample air cooling and a TT 750W
Pcie x1 WIFI- thats a temporary thing too.

I would recommend this for any basic build, the more complex the build the more money you spend, thats the rule.


Andy B.'s Profile

Display Name: Andy B.

Date Joined: 05/24/11

  • Reviews: 45
  • Helpfulness: 26
  • First Review: 05/31/11
  • Last Review: 08/26/16
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